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New titles just published

01 March 2024

This week’s selection: principles to live by, the women who shaped Augustine’s early life, and a travel book to Britain, via churches

Field Notes for the Wilderness: Practices for an evolving faith by Sarah Bessey (SPCK, £14.99 (£13.49); 978-0-281-09029-7).

Field Notes for the Wilderness guides the reader through multiple principles to live by for an evolving faith, including: Practising wonder and curiosity as spiritual disciplines; Mothering ourselves with compassion and empathy; Making space for lament and righteous rage; Finding good spiritual teachers; Discovering what we are for in this life, and moving in that direction. In this groundbreaking and hopeful book, Bessey has given us a table for our questions, a shepherd for our curiosity, tools to cultivate what we crave and a blessing for what was, even as we leave it behind.

Queens of a Fallen World: The lost women of Augustine’s Confessions by Kate Cooper (Books, £12.99 (£11.69); 978-1-399-80798-2). New in paperback

“While many know of St Augustine and the Confessions, few know of the women whose hopes and dreams shaped his early life: his mother, Monnica of Thagaste; his lover; his fiancée; and Justina, the troubled empress of ancient Rome. Drawing upon their depictions in the Confessions, historian Kate Cooper skilfully reconstructs their lives against the backdrop of the late Roman Empire to paint a vivid portrait of the turbulent society they and Augustine moved through.”

Steeple Chasing: Around Britain by church by Peter Ross (Headline, £10.99 (£9.89); 978-1-4722-8195-1). New in paperback

Steeple Chasing, though it sometimes strikes an elegiac note, is a song of praise. It celebrates churches for their beauty and meaning, and for the tales they tell. It is about people as much as place, flesh and bone not just flint and stone. From the painted hells of Surrey to the holy wells of Wales, consider this a travel book . . . with bells on.”

Selected by Frank Nugent, of the Church House Bookshop, which operates the
Church Times Bookshop.

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